Protein is one of the 3 main macronutrients as we know it. Its role in maintaining healthy skin and hair structure along with aiding in muscle repair, recovery and growth has been well-studied.
In addition to helping the body grow, protein can also be broken down to glucose to be used as a source of energy. And since it is broken down through a different or a longer pathway as compared to the breakdown of carbohydrates, the effect of protein on blood may show anywhere between a few hours to several hours after consumption. In diabetics since there is insulin deficiency, they need to pay particular attention to the possible effects of protein especially if the meal is largely based on protein and may need to adjust to the insulin dosages accordingly. So the connection between protein shakes and diabetes has to be thought of.
Protein shakes for diabetics – can they be consumed?
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Whey protein not is not one of the best class 1 proteins without a good reason; it will help you curb hunger pangs and being a fast-digesting protein it gets absorbed in the body quickly thereby aiding in faster recovery. Other than that, it helps in reducing fat and maintaining muscle. When used wisely, whey can also help you control blood sugar levels. However, before taking any kind of supplements it is always better to consult with your diabetologist as studies are not sure whether diabetics can drink protein shakes.
Since the body drains out your protein stores while using it for production of enzymes, hormones and other bodily processes, there may not be much left to serve fitness purposes. To overcome this, you would need to maintain the nitrogen balance in the body. Aim at consuming about 0.8-1.0 gm. of protein per kg/ body weight as recommended by the RDA. This should give you just enough protein stores that your body can use in a day.
Ideal time to take the shake:
Going by the studies, individuals with Type 2 diabetes show higher response to insulin on eating a low carb whey protein diet as compared to a similar meal without whey. The increase in insulin garners a low blood sugar level post-meal. This observable fact happens to delay the administration of diabetic medications without causing hypoglycemia.
A similar effect was reported in another 2014 study, with 28% low blood sugar and 95% more insulin after a carb+ whey protein shake was consumed by diabetics.
Protein & Kidneys:
It is important to consider that some patients with diabetes can also be subjected to diabetic nephropathy. However, if a diabetic is not aware whether or not he/ she has nephropathy, they can get diagnosed for the same by testing for ketones in urine. Following the result they may or may not be advised to restrict the protein intake.
But for those who do have kidney ailments, it is suggested to avoid any kind of additional protein intake that may put them at risk of kidney damage.
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What kind of a whey protein should a diabetic go for?
Here is a list of important points to consider when buying a protein supplement:
- Go for a product that gives good quality protein at 20-25 gms per serving.
- Check for the ingredients list/ nutrition facts label for carbohydrates included. The product should have carbohydrates coming in from complex sources rather than simple sugars. A completely sugar-free product or negligible amount of sugar per serving would be ideal – making it a protein shake for diabetics.
- Opt for a protein shake for diabetics that includes a decent amount of dietary fibre, anywhere between 1-3 gm. per serving.
Any additional inclusion of vitamins, minerals and fortifications are most welcome in a protein shake for diabetics.
Add OZIVA Protein & Herbs Shake to Your Diet if your diet is lacking in proteins.
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